Texas Department of Agriculture to hold produce safety meetings statewide


The Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) today announced it will hold a series of community meetings across the state to collect input on implementing the new federal law to promote the safety of fruits and vegetables grown across the country. The meetings will serve as a forum to gather public input as TDA develops the rules to administer this comprehensive new federal mandate. 

“We want to hear from our ag producers,” Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller said. “This is a substantial new federal effort, and the Texas Department of Agriculture wants to make sure we work hand-in-hand with our farmers to implement the rules consistently and efficiently. I’ll be at several of the meetings personally to join the conversation and hear any concerns from our ag producers.”

The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), specifically the Produce Rule, establishes science-based minimum standards for the safe growing, harvesting, packing and holding of fruits and vegetables grown for human consumption. This is the first time such standards have been implemented. The purpose of FSMA is to shift food safety regulations from a system that focuses on responding to contamination to one that focuses on preventing contamination. FSMA was enacted on Jan. 4, 2011, and it authorizes the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to take a preventive approach to food safety. TDA is the state agency responsible for implementing the corresponding produce safety program in Texas.

In hosting the meetings in seven locations across the state, TDA wants to give producers an opportunity to discuss the development of the administrative rules as they pertain to farm verification, inspection and enforcement.

Below is a list of locations, dates and times for the Produce Safety Administrative Rule development meetings. In order to make sure we have accurate seating, please RSVP to ProduceSafety@TexasAgriculture.gov with the location and number of people attending.

Location
Facility
Date
Time
Lubbock
Texas A&M Agrilife Extension
1102 E FM 1294
Lubbock, TX  79403
Tuesday,
May 1, 2018
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Fort Worth
Hampton Inn (West I-H 30)
2700 Green Oaks Road
Fort Worth, TX 76116
Wednesday,
May 2, 2018
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Tyler
Hampton Inn & Suites Tyler-South
8962 S. Broadway Avenue
Tyler, TX 75703
Thursday,
May 3, 2018
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Weslaco
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
2415 E. Business 83
Weslaco, TX 78596
Tuesday,
May 8, 2018
10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Uvalde
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
1619 Garner Field Road
Uvalde, TX 78801
Wednesday,
May 9, 2018
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
San Marcos
Hilton Garden Inn
2131 N Interstate HW 35
San Marcos, TX 78666
Wednesday,
May 16, 2018
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Rosenberg
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
1402 Band Road
Rosenberg, TX 77471
Tuesday,
May 15, 2018
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

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